I don’t jump on band-wagons. Not out of principle or anything as noble as that. And as much as I criticize my husband for fearing change, I am actually very similar. I usually like what I have going on and don’t want to do anything new or different.
So of course I was probably the last person to get a Facebook page and I will say I still don’t know how to use it as effectively as I can. And now I have to be on Twitter and Instagram. Help! These have been my summer to-do’s. I did manage to set up a Twitter account- Follow me! But I haven’t gotten on Instagram yet.
Anyway, back to band-wagons. As someone who does not have children, when the whole Frozen craze started, I looked the other way. But, I do like a good song. The lyrics to “Let it Go”, however confused me because I hadn’t seen the movie. There I stood, in my friends’ kitchen one Friday night and the movie was on. When the scene with the song came on, the room burst with excitement. I listened specifically to the words and turned to my friend, begging for an explanation. Ah ha! Now I get it. And then I was hooked.
About a month after that, there was a behind-the-scenes special about Frozen.
I love all the behind the scenes stuff I could get my hands on. That was research for my novel. There are little pieces of so many rock-u-mentaries that I mimicked in Forty Times Platinum. Even though my book is about musicians, I am nothing further from an expert on music. I can carry a tune that is it. No one will have any idea what I went through to try to understand the elements of music so I could write about it successfully, accurately and make it sound pleasant to read. Music is basically another language. And it’s up there with Japanese. Since all the symbols mean something different.
So I watched the Frozen special with interest and again peeled my eyes and ears for stuff I could steal. I mean use. Songwriters Kristen Anderson-Lopez and her husband Robert Lopez talked about what had inspired them to write the song. It was then that Kristen had used the word “vamp.” She was referring to the opening piano notes to the song. For the longest time I had been looking for that word! If it weren’t for the movie Frozen, there would have been a hole in my novel.
To this day, when I hear the opening to “Let it Go”, I think of my own fictional song, “Time and Place”— the song Jennifer Montgomery writes for newly signed artists Jamie Miller.
“A strong and intricate opening or vamp should get people’s attention, Jennifer thought.”
Then the screenwriter was being interviewed. Frozen was one of those movies that had many stops and starts. And even when they thought the story was complete, apparently when Kristen and Robert presented “Let it Go,” the screenwriter, said her reaction was “Oh God, I have to re-write this entire movie.”
I started crying. Coincidentally her name was Jennifer. I said, “I know Jennifer, I know how you feel.”
The re-write I was facing however was going to be even harder this time because I was being told to employ techniques I simply didn’t know. I decided to take advantage of the proofreading service and used the same editor to get me through a few chapters at a time. She was teaching me how to write a novel properly.
It took five more months to re-write and re-work Forty Times Platinum.
To be continued.